Posted tagged ‘frustrated’

A degree of essential skills?

September 27, 2011

Does this count if I argue with myself?

Recently we have offered our dear, valued readers a number of quite nuanced posts, tackling sensitive issues and asking some big questions. From debate on frankly ridiculous referendum guidance, to the problems facing all at Dale Farm, to equalities monitoring information, we’ve tackled it recently.

However, today is a return to a simple, straightforward old school rant, so if this is not your thing then look away now and come back tomorrow.

Todays rant takes us back to a pet topic of mine, and was brought up as I delved into a new shared drive area, which thanks to the vaguaries of ICT randomly became available to me. It covered recruitment, and laid out a dozen or more job descriptions which had been recruited to over the past few years. As I looked through them they covered a wide range of work areas, and required a huge range of skills and experience. But do you know what sat at the top of each person spec, regardless of the job or grade?

“Educated to degree standard”

Some added an “or equivalent” at the end of that short sentence, but regardless it invariably sat there in black and white, usually followed by the capital ‘E’ for essential.

What does this even mean?! It doesn’t appear to matter whether or not the degree was in any relevant area or subject, how well they did, what university they went to or when they did it, just that at some point in their life they studied and got that precious slip of paper. By inference, if you chose for whatever reason not to go to university then obviously you are not capable of fulfilling that role. (more…)

If Trade Unions are the answer I’m not sure what the question is…

July 11, 2011

And the countdown conundrum is...

Any post which attempts to commence a discussion of Trade Unions is bound to be declared as politically motivated. Please accept that this is a genuine attempt to discuss the issue and that I’m not a closet Tory. Also, please accept that this represents one bloggers view and not the view of the whole blog team.

Over the past 12-18 months I have become increasingly frustrated with the trades union in the Local Government sector. As far as I can tell they have failed in both the representative and the strategic elements of their role and have failed to provide the leadership I believe is required at this time.

I recognise that many of the problems they face may not be their fault and will discuss this in a moment but so far these are my main complaints.

Many councils are currently in the process of carrying out consultation with the trades union over changes to their staffs Ts and Cs. In just one example of this it has led to all staff in Shropshire being dismissed with the intention of re-employing them on new contracts. Many senior managers, being accustomed to working directly with trade unions rather than ‘staff’ have therefore negotiated direct with the trade unions and then announced the outcomes of these negotiations post fact.

This doesn’t work.

(more…)